Homegrown Texan

Born and raised in Texas, I've found the home of my heart and soul in the Pacific Northwest. I love trees, cool weather, and rain. I'm a back to basics kind of gal just trying to raise my family and find a bit of time to slow down in this hectic life.

This morning Nathan made Michael's bed for him "as a surprise".  Michael has often does this for Nathan in the past, so Nathan said he wanted to do something for him.  Michael gave Nathan a big hug and told him "I love you soooo much, Nathan".

These kids fight on occasion, but they really do love each other and are generally very sweet to each other.  Sometimes they are so sweet, my heart just melts, and I want it to last forever.

Ok, the neighbors got a fancy new Jeep.  And it's fancy new alarm system goes off all. the. time.  At first I thought it was growing pains with them getting used to it (I don't think they've had an alarmed vehicle before).  But it's going on weeks now, and I really don't think my neighbors are that incompetent (even though they, among several of my other neighbors, seem unable to get their garbage *in* the community garbage cans in the alley; I shudder to think what the floors around their toilets look like).  This thing goes off, among other times, every morning around 5:50 am, which to make things extra annoying, is 10 minutes before my alarm is set to go off.  Early enough that I don't want to just get up anyway, and late enough that I can't really go back to sleep after waking up in this adrenaline-pumping fashion.  This does not make me happy.

Well, I do think I figured out why.  Just now a helicopter flew overhead and the alarm started.  As the helicopter got quieter, the alarm stopped.  I'm pretty sure we have a traffic copter that flies overhead every morning (since we live near a major freeway).  Now you can definitely hear the chopper, but it's not insanely loud or anything.  I can't believe this alarm is that sensitive.

So, I'm annoyed.

So the last couple of months I've been working out at Curves.  Some may think of this as an old lady's club, and that may be true (I've only seen one person from my generation or younger there).  But you can get as much out of it as you put into it.  Plus it's close and I can get a workout done in 45 minutes (including travel time), which is about all I can manage to arrange to commit to in my morning schedule.  After 2 months, I can see more arm muscles than I ever saw even after training with free weights (I've always had poor arm and upper body strength).  I've lost a few pounds, and I'm sure I've gained some muscle.  Still haven't lost all the belly fat that I'd like (yes, I gain weight like a guy, so I have no butt and a beer belly).  But overall I've been doing well.

I do Curves 3x week (per recommendation), MWF.  I could take TTh off, but with previous workout attempts I've learned that those days off just serve as continual reminders to myself of how nice it is to sleep in an extra half hour.  This is a reminder that I do not need.  I had been walking at the park, but walking isn't quite doing it for me.  I hate running (call me crazy, but I always feel like my eyeballs are jolting around in my head, which quickly gives me a headache).  But the walking, while nice, wasn't feeling like enough.

So I this morning I took my shiny new helmet and not so new or shiny bike and went for a ride.  I had half an hour, so thought I'd ride out for 15 minutes and then ride back.  7 minutes into it I realized that I was just not going to make it that long, so I reduced my ride to 20 minutes total.  I was relieved to find on the way back that my outbound route had a slight uphill grade.  So the ride back was easier, and I learned that I wasn't quite the wimp that I thought I was (and I got back 2 minutes early).  I ended up going just over 2 miles (according to Google maps).  2 miles in 20 minutes works out to 7.3mph, which is pretty pathetic; I can't believe I'm that bad.  I had been toying with the idea of going on some local "beginners" rides on Saturdays; those say they are 12-15 mph for 15-20 miles, which apparently I'm not up for.  That said, I did pace myself a little more than I probably needed to, so I think I can do more.  Since I'm working out before work, I was a little paranoid of pushing too hard then running out of steam and ending up getting back late.  I just can't believe I'm so bad  that I'm not even beginner level.  I'm going to have to suck it up some weekend morning when I'm not under weekday morning time constraints and see what I can really do.

In any case, it's a start, and I'll only get better.  It did feel good to get out and ride.  I did some long bike rides as a teenager at summer camp and *loved* it.  I'm also glad I worked out for a couple of months before trying this; I could feel the strength in my legs and know that a couple of months ago I'd have been dying.  And, unlike with walking, I really have the potential to push myself and up my endurance level, which is what I need to be doing right now.